UNLOCKING TRUE POTENTIAL 
So, what’s the difference? To the average Joe on the street, it all sounds like the same thing but there are a few differences you should know about. 
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The Web Developer 
This is the guy (or gal) who writes the code that builds the website. Often accused of being a geek, most happy when incarcerated in a dark room with a set of headphones and a screen full of code, the developer uses HTML, CSS, JavaScript and various other code bases to create a website. 
 
The Web Designer 
The designer is much more aesthetic in approach. Not so concerned with how the website is built but is focused on how the user interacts with the site. It’s still (or should be) a functional role but, depending on the brief, is a lot more to do with getting people to engage and interact with the website. 
 
Blurred Lines 
These days, the lines between designer and developer are getting blurred – the designer tinkers with code and the developer has a go at design, especially using templates and themes that they can get off the shelf. This is fine BUT, in my 20+ years’ of experience, the designer is never a natural techy and the developer’s spatial relations and typography skills are mostly sadly lacking. The developer tends to design from the perspective of what he can build – he thinks in grids and just isn’t built to be creative. 
 
The Perfect Combination 
The best blend for a splendiferous website that not only looks amazing, offers the user a fantastic user journey across the site, enhances your company brand, loads really quickly, is found easily on search engines and works. Let the designer do their thing and make the website look dreamy, at which point they give it to the web developer, they have a chat about what technical functions can make the website have that real ‘wow’ factor and then the developer turns it into a reality. 
 
Just one more thing 
Not to confuse you, but just to clarify… The difference between a Graphic Designer and a Web Designer (should this be its own article? Not sure) but at this juncture I just want to point out that whilst Graphic Designers have a great eye for colour, typography and aesthetics in general, Website Designers understand code, user-experience and user-journey. There is a lot more to designing a website than just making it look nice. 
 
By Trudie Avery 
Avery Creative 
www.averycreative.co.uk 
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